Knowledge Graphs and GraphQL in Action: A Practical Approach to Using RDF and Semantic Models for Web Applications
  Irene Polikoff   Irene Polikoff
  Ralph Hodgson   Ralph Hodgson


Wednesday, October 16, 2019
04:15 PM - 05:15 PM

Level:  Intermediate

To take full advantage of Knowledge Graphs, they must be easily accessible to enterprise applications. This means that there is need for either APIs or a query language for knowledge graphs. A standard query language for RDF is SPARQL. It is extremely flexible and powerful; however, its usage for applications presents some challenges. SPARQL skills are not yet common for mainstream developers and query results are returned in a tabular format, while many applications require nested JSON objects. GraphQL is an application query language that is rapidly growing in popularity, replacing the REST style of APIs.

In this talk, we will:

  • Provide a quick overview of GraphQL and its advantages
  • Present an approach for mapping from the GraphQL schema language to RDF, in particular to SHACL shapes
  • Describe how this mapping makes it easier to use the RDF knowledge graph technology (e.g., graph databases, rule engines, SPARQL, and data validation) in applications

We will show examples of GraphQL queries over Knowledge Graph data, including advanced queries for search and filtering. We will also discuss integration of SPARQL and GraphQL for even more powerful queries.

Irene Polikoff, the CEO and co-founder of TopQuadrant, was a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Working Group and is now a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Community Group. She has more than two decades of experience in software development, management, consulting, and strategic planning. Since co-founding TopQuadrant in 2001, Irene has been involved in more than a dozen projects in government and commercial sectors. She has written strategy papers, trained customers on the use of the Semantic Web standards, developed ontology models, designed solution architectures, and defined deployment processes and guidance. Before co-founding TopQuadrant, Irene was a Principal in the national Knowledge, Content Management, and Portals Practice at IBM Global Services. Prior to that, she was a Senior Development Manager and a Project Executive for IBM Worldwide Consultant's tools and methods. Irene has a master's degree in Operations Research from Columbia University.

Ralph Hodgson is a co-founder and the CTO of TopQuadrant, Inc., a U.S.-based company that specializes in semantic technology solutions, tools, consulting, and training, focusing on data governance and lineage. He combines expertise in semantic technologies with over 30 years of experience in business application development and deployment, consulting, software development, and strategic planning. Prior to starting TopQuadrant in 2001, he held executive consulting positions at IBM Global Services where he was a founding member of Portal Practice and Object Technology Practice. Prior to IBM, he was European Technology Director, founder, and Managing Director of Interactive Development Environments, which was an international CASE tools vendor. Ralph is a published author and a frequent speaker at conferences. He has co-authored the books "Adaptive Information," published by John Wiley in 2004, and "Capability Cases: A Solution Envisioning Approach," published by Addison-Wesley in July 2005.